Creative personality: in the idea or in the details?

I read once that as a creative person you excel or enjoy one of two things: Coming up with the big idea, or focusing on the nitty gritty details. It made sense, but I also don't know if I completely agree. Maybe it's the gemini in me, but I've never been able to decide which I am. 



I've been praised throughout my career as being a "big idea thinker." And I would agree with that assessment. I love thinking beyond the boundaries of the current project at hand. Often times that's really what the client wanted in the first place- either they just didn't realize it, they're too afraid to let themselves go there, or sometimes they need to think beyond a problem or project to affirm their decision to make incremental changes now knowing there are greater possibilities for the future.



On the flip side though, I will obsess over details- to the point where little things will literal make me crazy. I don't just fall in love with a logo- I fall in love with an experience and all the little things that add up to create it. There is a reason why you love a certain coffee shop more than the one next door even if they're serving the same brew. Sure, it could be because you think a certain barista is especially cute- but even that is part of your experience with the brand. I may be designing a logo for said coffee shop, but I can't help but to also think about the perfect sign for your bathroom door, the just right color for behind your counter, how your take out sandwiches might be wrapped up...



I was looking through some photos I took at the Madonna Inn recently and suddenly it occurred to me that most of the time the big idea is actually in the details themselves. Yes, the Madonna Inn is this crazy over the top place (if you're not familiar, google it immediately- it's insane) but what sticks with you are the little details. Things like pink sugar. I mean, seriously. This place is so over the top, do you really think they need to make the table sugar pink? Absolutely not! But they do. And it makes you smile. And you remember it.

So what do you think about creativity? Do you just like coming up with an idea, or do you revel in getting all the details of the execution right? Or like me, have you found that your best ideas and most fun projects happen when your big idea is made up of a million little perfect details?